, Volume 45, Issue 1, pp 47–55 | Cite as

Generic delimitation of Aralia (Araliaceae)



Aralia, described by Linnaeus, remains a poorly defined genus. Many satellite genera ofAralia have been proposed, and some have been accepted without critical evaluation. These genera includeCoudenbergia, Megalopanax, Parapentapanax, andPentapanax. This study examined the historical background of the establishment of these genera and their diagnostic characters. It was found that (1)Aralia s. str. is a relatively diverse genus; (2) the separation ofPentapanax andParapentapanax fromAralia is unsubstantiated; (3)Megalopanax is synonymous withCoudenbergia; and (4) the boundaries betweenAralia and bothCoudenbergia andPentapanax intergrade. It is proposed, therefore, to mergeCoudenbergia, Parapentapanax, andPentapanax withAralia, which has nomenclatural priority.Aralia is herein defined as consisting of those species in Araliaceae with pinnate leaves, articulated rachises, five to eight-merous flowers, petals imbricate in buds, and articulated pedicels. The revised generic concept requires the following new combinations or new names:Aralia castanopsisicola, A. franchetti, A. gigantea, A. laevis, A. leschenaultii, A. parasitica, A. rex, A. subcordata, A. verticillata, andA. warmingiana.

Key words

Aralia Coudenbergia Megalopanax Pentapanax Parapentapanax Araliaceae lectotypification 


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Copyright information

© the New York Botanical Garden 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jun Wen
    • 1
  1. 1.Arnold Arboretum of Harvard UniversityCambridgeU.S.A.

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